Amsterdam, Netherlands

I have been neglecting this blog terribly so am now playing catch up on the last six months of travels.

Back in May, I spent a weekend in Amsterdam with two good friends. While I have been to Amsterdam on two previous occasions, this was the first trip I had taken to the city as an adult and as you can imagine the experience was quite different; there was a distinct lack of culture for one!

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We arrived late morning on the Friday and were very lucky to be greeted by beautiful weather. We spent the afternoon eating and drinking by one of the city’s many canals, admiring the vast amount of cyclists and the beautiful houseboats. Friday evening we went to Jazz Café Alto, a great cosy jazz bar with live music that I would highly recommend.

Saturday we explored the narrow streets a bit more, stopping to take in the sights of the Red Light District where women stand in the windows to tempt in willing patrons (photos are not allowed). In the afternoon we decided to try out a coffeeshop; we chose Green House  on a friend’s recommendation. The place has a very relaxed vibe, no alcohol is permitted, and the staff are friendly and willing to help out the newbies. At the back of the room you can place your order, choosing your flavour and strength. We tried smoking and eating some spacecake; the edible takes effect much slower so tread carefully!

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The walk home has to be one of the funniest experiences of my life; we struggled to navigate and very nearly gave up after finding food. But we persevered and found our way home, collapsing for a well needed nap as soon as we got back. We ended up going out to a club at 1:30am (sorry, I don’t remember the name!) and crawled through the door at 5:45, alarms set bright and early for 9am!

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I can’t remember anything we did on Sunday as honestly it was the worst hangover I’ve ever had! That said, it was such a fun weekend I would jump at the chance to do it all over again.

Top tips
1. Uber: just as easy to use as at home and saves the hassle of navigating a map after a few drinks!
2. Prepare to nap after a trip to a coffeeshop, Amsterdam really does take its toll
3. Choose your travelling companion carefully: you definitely need to go with someone who has an open mind to sex and drugs!
4. Drink beer or cider: spirits are much more expensive

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